Katie’s got it pretty good. She’s a talented young chef, she runs a successful restaurant, and she has big plans to open an even better one. Then, all at once, progress on the new location bogs down, her charming ex-boyfriend pops up, her fling with another chef goes sour, and her best waitress gets badly hurt. And just like that, Katie’s life goes from pretty good to not so much. What she needs is a second chance. Everybody deserves one, after all—but they don’t come easy. Luckily for Katie, a mysterious girl appears in the middle of the night with simple instructions for a do-it-yourself do-over:
1. Write your mistake
2. Ingest one mushroom
3. Go to sleep
4. Wake anew
And just like that, all the bad stuff never happened, and Katie is given another chance to get things right. She’s also got a dresser drawer full of magical mushrooms—and an irresistible urge to make her life not just good, but perfect. Too bad it’s against the rules. But Katie doesn’t care about the rules—and she’s about to discover the unintended consequences of the best intentions.
From the mind and pen behind the acclaimed Scott Pilgrim series comes a madcap new tale of existential angst, everyday obstacles, young love, and ancient spirits that’s sharp-witted and tenderhearted, whimsical and wise.
I originally hadn’t planned on reviewing this, mainly due to my mixed feelings. But I figured, what the heck, I might as well. I have to start off with stating that I had high expectations for this book. I was intrigued the moment I first laid eyes on the cover. I got super pumped when I saw one of my favorite youtubers reading it. And I got even more excited when my hold finally came in. I am one of those people that judges the book by its freaking pretty cover. I haven’t read anything else by this author or illustrator, but I was ready and willing to give it a whirl.
I wasn’t entirely pleased.
Grant it, it might just be me. It might be due to my too high expectations. I will happily admit that the plot itself was definitely original and interesting. I liked the art, like, a lot. The characters were all funny and varied. But Katie just really got on my nerves. As I have said before and will no doubt say again, I’m hardly ever a fan of the MC. I usually fall for someone in the supporting cast. Katie is no exception. But I dislike her even more so I just felt like she was this self centered brat a majority of the time, always wanting her way and only concerned with her own success.
So she gets this magical second chance, for whatever reason, but she’s only supposed to be able to do so once. Someone gets a bit greedy and decides if one second chance is possible, why not several? And from there it just really went downhill for me. It’s like she’s never content with what she gets. Its this constant back and forth between her ex and the fling that makes me want to grind my teeth in frustration. Even when she gets one, she also wants the other. If one doesn’t work out, she always has the other, as a backup plan. If something goes sour, hey! Another second chance. And then when she actually gets the one, she’s not even human enough to share. It becomes their life, their business. But she’s selfish. She wants everything, and she wants it for herself.
Maybe I am being too hard on Katie. But I never felt sorry for her throughout the whole book, and it’s a big book. I never felt like she learned her lesson in the end. She makes one friend, sorta, but that’s mainly because she wants to learn more about the house spirit that seems to be causing all the trouble… Which is another thing, she always casts the blame onto something or someone else. She is never at fault. I don’t mind flawed characters, but I hate when they never admit to it, not even once. Okay, and so maybe she does “apologize” in the end….but it didn’t really feel as though it should count.
I gave this book three stars, because the story itself was original, the rest of the characters were pretty interesting, and the art was pretty. I found it hilarious how Katie could hear the narrator and always liked to correct whatever was being said about her. Like, narcissist much?
I’ve read both negative and positive reviews. If you’ve read it, let me know what you thought.
Suggested Reading Level: Adult
Suggested Reading Level: Adult